The inspiration behind Realm Shifters

Posted by (twitter: @mkderin)
April 23rd, 2016 1:48 pm

We were so excited when we saw that the theme of Ludum Dare 35 was Shapeshift. This one word can mean a lot of things. The obvious meaning is changing form, shape or body but we went further during our ideation phase. We thought that the environment elements, the lighting and the music could also shift. If we could manage to get all those working in a game that would be so awesome! There are a lot of examples on character transformation in games but not as much on real time environment morphing/manipulation. Maybe this is because of technical limitations or the fact that every asset needs to be done at least twice for a game like this. Anyway, we started looking for similar games from the past for inspiration.

One of my all-time favorite game series is the Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver games. They have deep and interesting storylines, nice action/platform mechanics and at the core of the games the otherworldly environment shifting. Without spoiling anything (if you have the chance I really recommend playing those games), Raziel, the main protagonist can shift between worlds which leads to interesting puzzles in the game meanwhile keeping the experience visually diverse.

Environment shifting in Soul Reaver

Another great example for world shifting can be found in Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams. It is a nice little 2.5D platformer game which is really hard! (I spent hours just to complete the final level. :D) The main character Giana can transform herself between “Cute” and “Punk” personas making both the environment and the music change around her. What a wonderful mechanic!

Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams

With these two the main idea for the realm shifting mechanic was on track but we also needed elements for an inviting atmosphere. There came Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning and it’s unforgettable fantasy world setting. I love the visuals of that game! I wish I could experience it in VR! Take a look at this piece of art below. Beautiful, isn’t it?

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning

So these made the core inspiration leading us to the visuals and the main mechanics of Realm Shifters. We tried to make as much element as possible morph during the shifting mechanic.

We were really tired at the end of the 3rd day but we achieved what we set up to be our goal and we are really proud of the end result. Especially because we are mainly just two programmers. 😀

Realm Shifters

> Play Realm Shifters! <

If you know more games with these kind of mechanics, please let us know!

Cheers!

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One Response to “The inspiration behind Realm Shifters”

  1. fin_nolimit says:

    Wow!!!! Check out this art!!! That is incredible!! You did a fantastic job!

    http://ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-35/?action=preview&uid=86340

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